Ending months of speculation, Verizon announced Tuesday that it would begin selling a version of the iPhone 4 early next month.
“Today, two industry innovators are coming together to deliver something consumers have been hungry for for years,” said Lowell McAdam, the president and chief operating officer of Verizon, at a news conference in Manhattan. “We are bringing to market the fruit of our strategic partnership with a giant in the market, and that is Apple.”
Apple had to create a new version of the iPhone 4 for Verizon because its network uses a technology known as CDMA, as opposed to the GSM technology used in all existing iPhones.
McAdam said that Verizon and Apple first began discussing the prospect of bringing the iPhone 4 to Verizon two years ago.
“We spent a year in extensive testing and design to make sure it was up to our standard,” he said.
Verizon’s iPhone 4 will be available for preorder Feb. 3 for existing Verizon customers and will be generally available for preorder beginning Feb. 10.
Verizon executives said the 16-gigabyte version of the phone would cost $199 with a two-year contract, while the 32-gigabyte version would cost $299 — the same as AT&T’s pricing. It said pricing for data plans had not yet been determined.
The highly anticipated arrival of the iPhone on Verizon ends an agreement of exclusivity between Apple and AT&T. The partnership between Apple and Verizon is multiyear and nonexclusive, executives at both companies said. And it is likely to throw the U.S. smart phone market into something of a tizzy.
Tim Cook, the chief operating officer of Apple, said the company had been “looking forward to today for a long time.
“We’re incredibly pleased to give Verizon customers the choice they’ve been waiting for,” he said.
The company did not say whether it would modify the pricing structure for its data plans, which currently allow customers to buy unlimited data.